When SubwayDomer asked me to do this gig and gave me the SB Nation poll keys, I did have an unusual impulse, a premonition if you will. Staring at the blank first ballot, I had the completely irrational urge to vote Notre Dame number 1. I thought they were better than 24 or unranked or wherever the pre-season consensus had them at the time. But I clearly thought, "That would be ridiculous" and I didn't want to bring down needless hate on the blog. Then I thought hard about putting them at about ten, because I thought they really probably were a top ten team, but I didn't do that either. I ended up putting them at 20. I truly thought they were better than that, but I didn't want to "jinx" anything. I didn't want to look like a "homer." And I told myself, 20 was higher than almost all bloggers and official polls and certainly not unreasonable. What a joke. By week three I had them at #11 and by week 6 I had the Irish at #4. Each of these times I was ahead of the other pollsters, but looking back I sure wish I had more faith in this team. I should have said "Fuck it. Let's win the SB Nation Coulter/Kos Bias award every week!" At the very least it would have driven clicks, right?
But now, there is no more doubting this squad, even for a beleagured fanbase conditioned to wait for the other shoe to drop. They have faced down every challenge and deserve the number 1 ranking they have earned. The rest of the ballot saw a lot of movement as well based on an epically crazy Saturday, but all I really care about at this moment is defending that #1 ranking. Go Irish! Beat Trojans!